Case Studies of English-Medium Instruction in Higher Education: Business Programmes in China, Japan and the Netherlands
Citation:SHAO, LIJIE, Case Studies of English-Medium Instruction in Higher Education: Business Programmes in China, Japan and the Netherlands, Trinity College Dublin.School of Linguistic Speech & Comm Sci, 2019
Final-E-Thesis upload-with- transcripts-final submission-Lijie-thesis-.pdf (Approved Phd thesis) 9.233Mb
This doctoral project aims to conduct case studies of English as a medium of instruction (EMI) at three higher education institutions (HEIs) in China, Japan and the Netherlands – three ‘Expanding Circle’ countries. The research focuses on how EMI in each case is approached and how the major stakeholders’ (academic staff, students, administrators) perceive EMI. However, it must be pointed out this project is implementing cross case studies, rather than comparative studies defined in the field of comparative education. Furthermore, though three cases are situated in different contexts, general implications are expected to be explored to understand EMI implementations worldwide, or at least these three countries. Chapter One sets the scope and breadth of the research, beginning with an introduction to the rise of Global Englishes/World Englishes in the context of the rapid globalisation. Kachru’s Three Circles of English are elaborated. Particularly, among the Expanding Circle countries, further discussion is pursued about English and its use in China, Japan and the Netherlands. The internationalisation of higher education (HE) worldwide, a growing phenomenon driven by globalisation and the rise of Global Englishes means changes in educational policies across the globe at the national, regional and institutional levels. EMI is one of the key components of internationalisation strategies used in higher education. At the end of the chapter, the rationale, significance and goals of this research are described. The chapter concludes with a definition of EMI suitable for this study and an overview of the thesis structure. Chapter Two narrows down the scope and focus on EMI. The literature review centres on the origin, the development and the expansion of EMI in different regions of the world. Layers of its complexity are depicted through a comprehensive review of previous studies on EMI. Previous research topics are categorised at the macro level, such as EMI policies, and at the micro level, such as attitudes and EMI pedagogical approaches. Specifically, accounts of previous studies in perception-based EMI research are provided to summarise, and draw a comparison between, stakeholders’ EMI perceptions in different contexts. Chapter Three explores the context of the research in each case study. Following the vein of English forms in Kachru’s Three Circles of English, the internationalisation of higher education and the EMI development worldwide mentioned in previous chapters, a specific description of the EMI in each country is presented to summarise the history, status quo, problems and challenges of EMI in each country. Chapter Three demonstrates a sense of compatibility between the three institutions with contrasting features. Notably, previously conducted comparative EMI studies across institutions and nations are summarised to highlight the recent research focus on contrastive studies. Chapter Four examines the research methodologies in previous EMI studies and present the chosen methodology in this current research, namely a mixed-methods approach with a concurrent design. Three research questions of this doctoral project are presented, aiming to answer how EMI in each case is enacted and approached, and how the principal stakeholders, i.e. students, faculty teachers and management levels, perceive EMI . Specifically, the details cover how convenience sampling with a case study style was selected, a description of the research instruments and the administration, as well as the ethical research aspects. The research instrucments employed are questionnaires, semi structured interviews, archive examination and classroom observation. At the operational level, the chosen methodology involves the use of SPSS for quantitative analysis of questionnaires and Nvivo for the processing of the qualitative data, the interviews, observation notes and EMI course-related documents. Chapters Five to Seven consist of a presentation of the data collection and analysis that are conducted by the order of the research questions. Interpretations of the separate qualitative and quantitative data are combined when necessary to provide a multifacted and sophisticated understanding of EMI. Chapter Five answers the first research question, exploring how EMI is approached in each case study and the general implications emerged beyond universities. The qualitative data gathered from the interviews, classroom observation and archive examination are presented to illustrate how each dimension of the ROADMAPPING framework is enacted at each university. Chapter Six elaborates the second research question, addressing students’ perceptions focusing on English improvement and general content learning outcomes. The quantitative data from the questionnaires provide a comparison of students’ EMI perceptions in three universities, combined with in-depth information and illustrations from students’ interviews. Chapter Seven investigates the thir research question, focusing on teachers’ perceptions with an emphasis on perceived students’ English proficiencies and content comprehension. Additionally, comparative perceptions between the teachers and students in each university are drawn upon. Chapter Eight pursues further discussion on the findings and a cross-case analysis for exploration of possible similarities and differences in the EMI implementation in the three institutions. The chapter then concludes by summarising the significant general findings, emphasising the important arguments and stressing the significant comparisons. The implications based on the findings are integrated into further general suggestions and recommendations for EMI implementation in different contexts, in terms of explicit EMI goals at the institutional level, fundamental transition to a proactive pedagogical approach, efficient collaboration between content and language support faculties and consistent training support for teachers, as well as high awareness of implementing EMI in a multilingual university setting.
Author: SHAO, LIJIE
Publisher:Trinity College Dublin. School of Linguistic Speech & Comm Sci. C.L.C.S.
Type of material:Thesis
Availability:Full text available